Honda Unveils FCEV Concept at LA Auto Show - Announces U.S. and Japan Launch in 2015
On November 20, Honda unveiled its Fuel Cell Electric Vehicle (FCEV) concept car at the Los Angeles International Auto Show (LAIAS). The FCEV concept features sweeping lines and an ultra-aerodynamic body. Honda also announced that its next generation of FCEVs are expected to be launched in the United States and Japan in 2015, followed by Europe.
|FCHEA President & Executive Director, Morry Markowitz (left), and FCHEA Board Chairman and Honda Fuel Cell Vehicle Marketing Manager, Stephen Ellis (right), pictured in front of the Honda FCEV Concept (Source: FCHEA)|
For its next generation FCEVs, Honda has developed a new fuel cell stack, which is 33 percent smaller and tours increased power output from 100 kilowatts (KW) to 106 KW. This new size stack allows Honda to move the stack under to the engine compartment, expanding the seating to five passengers.
More information on Honda's FCEV concept is available here.
Toyota Unveils FCEV Concept at Tokyo Auto Show - Launch Planned Around 2015
On November 20, Toyota also unveiled its FCV Concept vehicle at the 43rd Tokyo Motor Show 2013. Along with the unveiling, Toyota also announced that its next generation fuel cell vehicle will be launched around 2015.
The Toyota FCV Concept exterior design evokes two main characteristics: the transformation of air into water as the system produces electricity, and the powerful acceleration enabled by the electric drive motor.
|Toyota's FCV Concept Unveiled at the Tokyo Motor Show (Source: Toyota)|
Toyota's new fuel cell vehicle will also feature a redesigned fuel cell stack, providing at least 100 kilowatt (kW) output, more than twice that of the stack in Toyota's current FCHV-adv.
More information on Toyota's FCV Concept is available here.
Hyundai Unveils Next-Generation FCEV at LA Auto Show - To Begin Selling to Retail Customers in Spring 2014
On November 20, Hyundai also unveiled its next-generation Tucson Fuel Cell vehicle, and announced plans to begin selling the vehicle in the U.S. market beginning in Spring 2014. The Hyundai Tucson Fuel Cell will be available for a 36-month lease for $499 per month with $2,999 down, including unlimited hydrogen refueling and valet maintenance.
|Hyundai Tucson Fuel Cell Vehicle Unveiled at LA Auto Show (Source: FCHEA)|
The Tucson Fuel Cell begins mass production for the U.S. market in February 2014 at the Ulsan, South Korea assembly plant.
More information on Hyundai's Tucson Fuel Cell is available here.
Intelligent Energy Launches Upp, portable fuel cell for USB Charging
On November 12, Intelligent Energy launched Upp, a portable fuel cell device to charge and power personal electronics such as phones, tablets, cameras, and e-readers. Upp will deliver a weeks' worth of charge to most devices by using compressed hydrogen from its fully replaceable and reusable fuel cartridge.
Intelligent Energy will be launching Upp initially in sub-Saharan Africa, showcasing their product at AfricaCom in Cape Town, South Africa from November 12 - 14. The charger also comes paired with an Android and iOS app that allows users to monitor fuel levels and personal usage statistics.
For a link to Intelligent Energy's press release, click here.
First National Bank of Omaha Upgrades ClearEdge Power Fuel Cells for Data Center
On November 21, ClearEdge Power announced that the First National Bank of Omaha has opted to continue powering their data center in Omaha, Nebraska with PureCell fuel cells. The bank will upgrade its two existing PureCell Model 200 systems, installed in 1999, to one PureCell Model 400 system.
Installed on the main floor of the building, the system will provide 400 kilowatts (KW) of clean and efficient heat and power to the data center. Using the fuel cell system allows the bank to reduce its carbon footprint by 1,500 metric tons of CO2 annually, as well as save over a million gallons of water annually.
For a link to ClearEdge Power's press release, click here.
Ballard Power ElectraGen Telecom Backup Trial with Telstra Successful
On November 19, Ballard Power Systems published findings and results from a 12-month trial of its telecommunications backup fuel cell units for Telstra Corporation Limited in Australia.
Telstra had been assessing alternative power systems for its network, and deployed nine Ballard ElectraGen ME fuel cells in rural and remote locations.
Telstra recently highlighted the benefits of the fuel cells, citing increased reliability and reduced maintenance costs, as well as extended operating life times. Telstra also reported that the ElectraGen unit was able to provide continuous power to a base that suffered grid damage from a lightning strike which would've lost power otherwise.
As a result of the trial, Ballard's ElectraGen fuel cells are now approved as standard solutions for Telstra mobile stations.
For more information, visit Telstra's website here. To view Ballard Power's press release, click here.
Apple's North Carolina Bloom Energy Fuel Cell Farm Becomes Fully Operational
On November 18, Apple announced that the fuel cell and solar panel installations were fully operational at its Maiden, North Carolina data center. Completed last year, the 10 megawatt (MW) fuel cell farm utilizes Bloom Energy stacks to generate electricity from biogas onsite. The fuel cell installation occupies only a couple of acres, a much smaller footprint in comparison to the two accompanying 20 MW solar farms, totaling 100-acre apiece.
Bloom Energy has supplied Bloom fuel cell boxes to numerous technology companies in recent years, providing powers to data centers for eBay, Verizon, Google, and others. Apple's fuel cell and solar farm is now the largest privately-owned clean energy facility in the United States.
For an in-depth look at the installation, click here.
California State University San Bernardino Installs FuelCell Energy Power Plant
On November 12, FuelCell Energy's Direct FuelCell (DFC) 1500 power plant became fully operational at the California State University San Bernardino. The 1.4 Megawatt (MW) combined heat and power (CHP) project was a joint venture between Cal State and Southern California Edison, and generates primary power and heat for the university at no cost, saving $120,000 a year in natural gas expenditures. Cal State San Bernardino is the fifth California University to receive a FuelCell Energy power plant, representing eight MW in total generation capacity.
To read the full article, click here.
ITM Power Announces Sale of Electrolyser Plant to UK Government
On November 19, ITM Power announced that it had received an order for an electrolyser plant from a UK Government agency. The plant is based on ITM Power's HPac platform, which is a high-efficiency proton-exchange membrane (PEM), allowing for mid-range hydrogen production.
ITM Power recently completed the delivery of electrolyers at the Thuga plant in Frankfurt, Germany.
For more information, read ITM Power's press release here.
Nuvera to Provide Italian Shipbuilder with Fuel Cell Technology
On November 7, Nuvera Fuel Cells announced that Fincantieri, the high-end Italian shipbuilder, had commissioned the company to produce eight Orion fuel cell stacks. The fuel cells, with a total power of 260 kilowatts (kW) each, will be used as range extenders, providing reduced emissions and silent propulsion for luxury yachts.
|123m Motor Yacht Serene by Fincantieri Yachts (Source: Nuvera Fuel Cells)|
The program will begin in December 2013, and Nuvera is expected to deliver all of the Orion prototypes by mid-2014.
For a link to the full press release, click here.
Ramar Foods installs Bloom Energy Fuel Cell at Facility
On November 12, Ramar Foods, a California-based Asian and specialty foods producer, announced the installation of a Bloom Energy fuel cell system, which will power its Pittsburg manufacturing facility. The 200 kilowatt (kW) fuel cell will provide 65% of the 33,000 square-foot facility's total electricity needs. Integration of fuel cell technology will substantially reduce emissions, offsetting Ramar's carbon footprint by 400,000 pounds annually.
VP of Marketing PJ Quesada praised Bloom Energy's fuel cell, saying that "...fuel cells make the most sense for our operation, which run 24/7, unlike the sun." Ramar Foods will dedicate the new fuel cell installation during a November 19 "wire-cutting" ceremony.
For a link to the full Ramar Foods press release, click here.
Plug Power Receives NYSERDA Funding for Fuel Cell Refrigeration Units
On November 13, Plug Power announced that it had received funding from the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA) to demonstrate a hydrogen fuel cell to power transport refrigeration units (TRU), replacing traditional diesel units. Plug Power will develop fuel cell and connecting hardware based on its GenDrive architecture, which is used in a variety of applications, including material handling fleets. The company will partner with Carrier Transicold, a United Technologies subsidiary for transport refrigeration, and Air Products, a hydrogen supplier, to pilot the TRU for a Sysco distribution center in Long Island, New York for 12 months.
In total, Plug Power has received $500,000 from NYSERDA to demonstrate the project. In August, the Department of Energy announced its own award to Plug Power for the development of fuel cell TRUs, amounting to a $650,000 contract from the Pacific Northwest National Laboratories (PNNL).
For a link to Plug Power's press release, click, here.
Air Liquide Japan and Toyota Tususho Form Joint Venture for Hydrogen Fueling Stations in Japan
On October 28, Air Liquide Japan, a subsidiary of Air Liquide, announced the formation of a joint venture with Toyota Tsusho Corporation, a Toyota affiliate focused on energy business, to develop Japan's first commercial network of hydrogen stations.
The joint venture, "Toyota Tsusho Air Liquid Hydrogen Energy Corporation" will initially establish two hydrogen filling stations in the Aichi area of Japan, which will be available for public use and are expected to be operational in the end of 2014.
Toyota Tsusho will own 51% of the joint venture, with Air Liquide Japan holding the remaining 49% stake.
Japan has aimed for the development of 100 hydrogen filling stations by 2015, connecting four major cities, and coinciding with the launch of fuel cell electric vehicles to the consumer market.
For a link to the full press release, click here
Plug Power, Fuel Cell Industry Participates in DOE-Sponsored Investor Day
On November 4, Plug Power Inc. joined other fuel cell industry professionals in New York City at a Department of Energy (DOE) sponsored Investor Day. The event was held to showcase market developments and successes in the fuel cell industry. Additionally, Plug Power and other fuel cell manufacturers discussed organizational goals and future plans with investors, policy makers and other key parties.
Key officials in attendance included Congressman Paul Tonko (D-NY), and Richard Kauffman, Chairman of Energy and Financing for New York State, and Steve Chalk, Deputy Assistant Secretary of Renewable Energy at the Department of Energy.
|Photo from DOE Investor Day - From left to right: George McNamee - Chairman of the Board of Directors, Plug Power; Gerry Conway, Plug Power; Andy Marsh, Plug Power; Congressman Paul Tonko (D-NY); Steve Chalk, Deputy Assistant Secretary of Renewable Energy; Sunita Satyapal, DOE; Richard Kaufmann, Chairman of Renewable Energy, NYSERDA; Mark Sperry, H2 Pump; Glen Eisman, H2 Pump (Source: Plug Power)|
Andy Marsh, CEO of Plug Power, presented on Plug Power's current progress in the material-handling industry, and discussed newly validated markets for fuel cell applications such as airports, refrigeration units, and range-extenders for electric vehicles.
For a link to the full article, click here.
Ballard Power CEO Speaks to FCH JU Assembly
On November 13, Ballard Power Systems CEO John Sheridan spoke at the 6th Stakeholders General Assembly of the Fuel Cell and Hydrogen - Joint Undertaking (FCH-JU), held in Brussels. Sheridan joined a panel to discuss progress in technology deployment, international intiatives, and product development for fuel cells and hydrogen energy. The event marks the 10th anniversary of a European fuel cell and hydrogen energy strategy.
To date, Ballard Power has deployed approximately 350 ElectraGen backup power fuel cell systems in Europe, partnering with telecom operators in several countries. Additionally, Ballard aims to power 40 new zero-emission fuel cell buses entering operation next year.
FCH-JU is a public-private partnership which supports fuel cell and hydrogen energy research and development by providing subsidies for eligible programs.
For a link to Ballard Power's press release, click here.
Hydrogenics Wins Technology Green 15 at 2013 Deloitte Awards
On November 13, Hydrogenics announced that it had been named a winner of the Deloitte Technology Green 15 award for its efforts in creating technology and intellectual property that promotes the efficient use of the earth's resources. In a press release statement, Hydrogenic's CEO Daryl Wilson pointed to the company's success in developing hydrogen fuel cell power systems for transportation and back-up power, as well as their power-to-gas energy storage technology as reasons for the company's recognition.
Each year, Deloitte awards the Technology Green 15 awards to the top Canadian headquartered or Canadian controlled companies who help promote a sustainable energy future.
For a link to Hydrogenic's press release, click here
ITM Power Announces Memorandum of Understanding with NRM Germany
On November 18, ITM Power announced that it had signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with German company Netzdienste Rhein-Main GmbH (NRM), a 90% subsidiary of Mainova Aktiengesellschaft GmbH (Mainova), one of Germany's largest energy suppliers. Under the MOU, the two companies will jointly identify and quote for PEM Electrolysis Power-to-Gas (P2G) projects around the world. NRM will retain exclusive rights to deploy ITM Power plants in Hessen, Germany and maintain the status of preferred partner with other projects. The MOU covers both hydrogen injection into natural gas pipelines and methanation.
ITM Power and NRM are collaborating with other partners in the Thuga Group to build a P2G plant at a Mainova site in Schielestrasse, Frankfurt. The plant is planned to go live in December.
For more information, read ITM Power's press release here.
Microsoft Publishes Research Paper on Powering Data Center with Fuel Cells
On November 12, software giant Microsoft published a research paper which details its efforts to integrate small, modular methane-powered fuel cells directly into its server racks, eliminating the need for external installations. By putting thousands of 10-20 kilowatt (kW) power plants inside each rack, Microsoft hopes to dramatically lower electric transmission losses by going directly from power generation to application. The concept would also reduce the number of points of failure, improving the reliability and resiliency of the data center's operation.
Microsoft senior research program manager, Sean James, stated that the company has already constructed a proof-of-concept fuel cell powered server rack, though it has yet to gather any real world data.
To read more about his team's fuel cell research and modeling efforts, click here to download the report.
For a link to a Wired article on this concept, click here.
Other Headlines of Note:
Bloomberg BusinessWeek | November 11, 2013
Der Spiegel | November 1, 2013
The World's Greenest Jail?
The Atlantic | November 1, 2013
Post Sandy, US Pushes Microgrids for Backup Power
USA Today | October 31, 2013
Toyota Shows Off Fuel-Cell Automobile
New York Times | November 20, 2013
Honda Shows Concept for Next Fuel-Cell Car
USA Today | November 20, 2013
Tokyo Motor Show -Toyota Wonders: What Is A Car?
Wall Street Journal | November 20, 2013
Honda's next hydrogen car coming in 2015
Fox News | November 21, 2013
Toyota unveils hydrogen car for 2015 at Tokyo auto show as competition steps up in fuel cells
Washington Post |November 20, 2013
L.A. Auto Show: Honda debuts fuel-cell concept car
Los Angeles Times | November 20, 2013
Hyundai To Sell Hydrogen-Powered SUV Next Year
Time | November 19, 2013
Toyota eyes mass production of fuel cell car by 2015
BBC News | November 20, 2013
Hyundai to Lease Fuel-Cell SUV for $499 as Hydrogen Race Widens
Bloomberg | November 20, 2013